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Uni students compete with autonomous robot technology

Engineering students from across Australia and New Zealand are exploring smart transport technology through an autonomous robotics competition in September.

This year, the National Instruments Autonomous Robotics Competition (NIARC) has a theme of “Transportation Innovation”, which will see the autonomous robots navigate a ‘smart city’.

The robots must follow road rules, adjust speed in line with school zones and highways, pick up ‘passengers’ and return home safely. Each robot's objective is to earn the most amount of points by completing the required tasks as quickly and efficiently as possible.

“Today’s vehicles are supercomputers on wheels but there are still so many exciting innovations to come,” said Chandran Nair, Vice President for Asia-Pacific, National Instruments.

"Car manufacturers are racing to bring autonomous vehicles to market and the technology has the potential to change everything about the way we move people and goods. That’s why we are so excited to be able to offer students the opportunity to be a part of that change.

“The industry will face increasingly complex systems and demands for improved speed, productivity and efficiency. By enabling the students to work with industry-leading hardware and software, we can help provide them with the real-world skills needed to become tomorrow’s top engineers."

Now in its seventh year, NIARC has grown from just 11 teams to more than two dozen, all from leading Australian and New Zealand universities. Previous winners include, University of Wollongong (2016), University of South Australia (2015), University of New South Wales (2014) and more.

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